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Author Topic: 50 books for 2017  (Read 1963 times)

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luisterpaul

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Re: 50 books for 2017
« Reply #60 on: June 30, 2017, 07:36:18 AM »

1. Central Station - Lavie Tidhar
2. The Medusa Chronicles - Stephen Baxter & Alastair Reynolds
3. Stories Of Your Life and Others - Ted Chiang
4. Darwinia - Robert Charles Wilson
5. On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft - Stephen King
6. The Elements of Style - Strunk & White
7. Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life - Anne Lamott
8. Speaker's Meaning - Owen Barfield
9. 1Q84 - Haruki Murakami
10. Revenger - Alastair Reynolds
11. Mars Prime - William C. Dietz
12. Steering the Craft: Exercises and Discussions on Story Writing for the Lone Navigator or the Mutinous Crew - Ursula K. Le Guin
13. Astrophysics: A Very Short Introduction - James Binney
14. Coyote - Allen Steele
15. The Telling - Ursula K. Le Guin
16. Gifts - Ursula K. Le Guin
17. Voices - Ursula K. Le Guin
18. Powers - Ursula K. Le Guin
19. Orlando - Virginia Woolf
20. The Other Wind - Ursula K. Le Guin
21. The Girl in the Road - Monica Byrne
22. Pygmy - Chuck Palahniuk
23. Deep Navigation - Alastair Reynolds
24. Typo Squad - Stephen Lomer
25. Tales From Earthsea - Ursula K. Le Guin

Just a handful of short stories to flesh out the magical world of Earthsea, if you're into that sort of thing.
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MissKitty

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Re: 50 books for 2017
« Reply #61 on: July 01, 2017, 01:36:48 PM »

12. Fight Club - Chuck Palahniuk

When a friend found out I hadn't read this, he immediately rectified it by loaning me his copy. Loved it.
The ending is SO GOOD.

YES!

So now my friend has loaned me Snuff, which I'm going to try to finish over the holiday. Another friend says Survivor and Horror are better than Snuff and says I should read them next. What do you reckon Paul?
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daytime drinking

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Re: 50 books for 2017
« Reply #62 on: July 02, 2017, 10:58:57 PM »

is the ending different from the film?  i've only read lullaby and think about it to this day
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luisterpaul

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Re: 50 books for 2017
« Reply #63 on: July 05, 2017, 09:06:23 AM »

So now my friend has loaned me Snuff, which I'm going to try to finish over the holiday. Another friend says Survivor and Horror are better than Snuff and says I should read them next. What do you reckon Paul?
I haven't read Snuff, but from the reviews I gather, if you were to rank all his books from best to worst, it would end up near the bottom. My favorites from him are (not necessarily in order): Rant, Choke, and Lullaby. Second string would be Invisible Monsters, Fight Club, and Survivor.

So far I've read his books mostly in order of publication and it's been fascinating to see how his novels relate to each other. There will be themes he touches on in one book then more deeply explores in the next. There will be literary tricks that echo from one to another. Choke in particular makes marvelous use of repeated phrases.

Having said all that, Rant is a good one to read after Fight Club.

DD, the ending of the book is entirely different from the movie. The movie did a great job staying true to the book, even enhancing the story in some ways, but totally dropped the ball with the conclusion. If nothing else, find it in a bookstore, read the last chapter (what follows after he shoots himself in the face). Like your reaction to Lullaby, I still think about the book's ending to this day.
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luisterpaul

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Re: 50 books for 2017
« Reply #64 on: July 05, 2017, 09:15:00 AM »

1. Central Station - Lavie Tidhar
2. The Medusa Chronicles - Stephen Baxter & Alastair Reynolds
3. Stories Of Your Life and Others - Ted Chiang
4. Darwinia - Robert Charles Wilson
5. On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft - Stephen King
6. The Elements of Style - Strunk & White
7. Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life - Anne Lamott
8. Speaker's Meaning - Owen Barfield
9. 1Q84 - Haruki Murakami
10. Revenger - Alastair Reynolds
11. Mars Prime - William C. Dietz
12. Steering the Craft: Exercises and Discussions on Story Writing for the Lone Navigator or the Mutinous Crew - Ursula K. Le Guin
13. Astrophysics: A Very Short Introduction - James Binney
14. Coyote - Allen Steele
15. The Telling - Ursula K. Le Guin
16. Gifts - Ursula K. Le Guin
17. Voices - Ursula K. Le Guin
18. Powers - Ursula K. Le Guin
19. Orlando - Virginia Woolf
20. The Other Wind - Ursula K. Le Guin
21. The Girl in the Road - Monica Byrne
22. Pygmy - Chuck Palahniuk
23. Deep Navigation - Alastair Reynolds
24. Typo Squad - Stephen Lomer
25. Tales From Earthsea - Ursula K. Le Guin
26. Throw Like A Woman - Susan Petrone

I was hesitant to pick this up because I'm not really into baseball. Boy, was that a stupid reason to avoid a book. I should have known I'd like this since I liked A Body at Rest so much. Every chapter had something to give, if you know what I mean. While I haven't been converted to baseball fandom, I have been confirmed as a Susan Petrone fan, and look forward to her third novel.
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MissKitty

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Re: 50 books for 2017
« Reply #65 on: July 05, 2017, 05:14:42 PM »

1. The People's House - David Pepper
2. Mastering the Art of Soviet Cooking - Anya Von Bremzen
3-4. Among the Living and the Dead: A Tale of Exile and Homecoming on the War Roads of Europe - Inara Verzemnieks
5. Black Earth: The Holocaust as History and Warning - Timothy Snyder
6. Swing Time - Zadie Smith
7. The Auschwitz Volunteer: Beyond Bravery - Capt. Witold Pilecki [Auschwitz Prisoner #4859], translated to English by Jarek Garlinski.
8. Black-Eyed Susans - Julia Heaberlin
9. Playing Dead - Julia Heaberlin
10. On Tyranny: 20 Lessons from the 20th Century - Timothy Snyder
11. Lilac Girls - Martha Hall Kelly
12. Fight Club - Chuck Palahniuk

13. Snuff - Chuck Palahniuk

There were things I really enjoyed about this book. I liked that the entire book takes place in an 8-10 hour period. I liked the way each character had his/her own chapter, and I liked the way the characters/chapters interacted. I liked the pathos and the humor.

I didn't like the fact that I figured out who Cassie's child was fairly early on - Palahniuk wasn't subtle about his red herrings at all. I didn't like the ending either, mainly because it was just so implausible. I mean, the whole concept of the book was kinda doubtful but I thought, "well I'll go along for the ride" but that ending was laughable. Maybe that was the point?

Anyway, I'm going to delve into some more Palahniuk because I like his style. He's quite blokey, isn't he?
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luisterpaul

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Re: 50 books for 2017
« Reply #66 on: July 06, 2017, 08:34:46 AM »

1. Central Station - Lavie Tidhar
2. The Medusa Chronicles - Stephen Baxter & Alastair Reynolds
3. Stories Of Your Life and Others - Ted Chiang
4. Darwinia - Robert Charles Wilson
5. On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft - Stephen King
6. The Elements of Style - Strunk & White
7. Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life - Anne Lamott
8. Speaker's Meaning - Owen Barfield
9. 1Q84 - Haruki Murakami
10. Revenger - Alastair Reynolds
11. Mars Prime - William C. Dietz
12. Steering the Craft: Exercises and Discussions on Story Writing for the Lone Navigator or the Mutinous Crew - Ursula K. Le Guin
13. Astrophysics: A Very Short Introduction - James Binney
14. Coyote - Allen Steele
15. The Telling - Ursula K. Le Guin
16. Gifts - Ursula K. Le Guin
17. Voices - Ursula K. Le Guin
18. Powers - Ursula K. Le Guin
19. Orlando - Virginia Woolf
20. The Other Wind - Ursula K. Le Guin
21. The Girl in the Road - Monica Byrne
22. Pygmy - Chuck Palahniuk
23. Deep Navigation - Alastair Reynolds
24. Typo Squad - Stephen Lomer
25. Tales From Earthsea - Ursula K. Le Guin
26. Throw Like A Woman - Susan Petrone
27. The Chronoliths - Robert Charles Wilson

Wilson is one of those seemingly all too rare sci-fi writers who not only writes solid science fiction but is also a good writer. He creates intriguing scenarios and convincing dramatic tension, with writing that flows and occasionally approaches poetic. His weakness may be the conclusion. Spin, for which he won a Hugo, had a perfect ending. Darwinia didn't end satisfactorily at all. The Chronoliths was somewhere in between: It worked, but wasn't anything special. Regardless, I loved this book, and devoured it in three days. More often than not his books are a breath of fresh air.
« Last Edit: July 07, 2017, 10:21:38 AM by luisterpaul »
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luisterpaul

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Re: 50 books for 2017
« Reply #67 on: July 10, 2017, 10:09:38 AM »

1. Central Station - Lavie Tidhar
2. The Medusa Chronicles - Stephen Baxter & Alastair Reynolds
3. Stories Of Your Life and Others - Ted Chiang
4. Darwinia - Robert Charles Wilson
5. On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft - Stephen King
6. The Elements of Style - Strunk & White
7. Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life - Anne Lamott
8. Speaker's Meaning - Owen Barfield
9. 1Q84 - Haruki Murakami
10. Revenger - Alastair Reynolds
11. Mars Prime - William C. Dietz
12. Steering the Craft: Exercises and Discussions on Story Writing for the Lone Navigator or the Mutinous Crew - Ursula K. Le Guin
13. Astrophysics: A Very Short Introduction - James Binney
14. Coyote - Allen Steele
15. The Telling - Ursula K. Le Guin
16. Gifts - Ursula K. Le Guin
17. Voices - Ursula K. Le Guin
18. Powers - Ursula K. Le Guin
19. Orlando - Virginia Woolf
20. The Other Wind - Ursula K. Le Guin
21. The Girl in the Road - Monica Byrne
22. Pygmy - Chuck Palahniuk
23. Deep Navigation - Alastair Reynolds
24. Typo Squad - Stephen Lomer
25. Tales From Earthsea - Ursula K. Le Guin
26. Throw Like A Woman - Susan Petrone
27. The Chronoliths - Robert Charles Wilson
28. Beautiful You - Chuck Palahniuk

In this hilariously absurd tale of self-pleasure gone awry, Chuck Palahniuk hits it out of the park. Several parks, in fact. This may be his funniest novel yet.
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c-lando

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Re: 50 books for 2017
« Reply #68 on: July 17, 2017, 10:19:06 AM »

1. "Near Enemy: A Spademan Novel" - Adam Sternbergh
2. "Commonwealth" - Ann Patchett - I could not have loved his more. LOVED TO THE MAX! My first time reading one of her novels and it will not be my last.
3. "Today Will Be Different" - Maria Semple - I totally thought this book was going to solely be about some woman's "first- world problems". But, it started taking all of these twists and turns and was much more than I thought it would be.
4. "A Gentleman in Moscow" - Amor Towles - Some moments were soooooooo slow, while I previously noted that I could live forever in the chapter from Book 2 titled, “1926: Adieu”.
5. "State of Wonder" - Ann Patchett - This author can create the most amazing stories. So rich and emotional.
6. "This Is the Story of a Happy Marriage" - Ann Patchett
7. "Spoiled" - Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan - GFY girls write a YA book. Too Y and not enough A for me, even for a last minute beach read.

Looks like I'm back in the habit of reading bits of books and giving up on them. Hrumpf.

8. "Modern Lovers" - Emma Straub - I thought I liked where the book was going but then it seemed like she just got lazy and gave up by using some newspaper clippings to tie everything up. BOO.
9. "The Hate U Give" - Angie Thomas
10. "The Wrong Side of Goodbye" - Michael Connelly (a Harry Bosch/Lincoln Lawyer book)
11. "The Smell of Other People's Houses" - Bonnie-Sue Hitchcock - Thanks for the recommendation, trixi!
12. "Maine" - J. Courtney Sullivan - This would make a good beach book. Not dumb, but not heavy.
13. "The Asphalt Warrior" - Gary Reilly - I forget how I found this recommendation, but it's a good one. I thought it would be more of a detective or crime novel. But, it's mainly just the thoughts of the cabbie/philosopher/lover of GILLIGAN'S ISLAND protagonist. I didn't mind spending time in Murph's head.
14. "Both Ways Is the Only Way I Want It" - Maile Meloy
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MissKitty

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Re: 50 books for 2017
« Reply #69 on: July 17, 2017, 02:18:31 PM »

1. The People's House - David Pepper
2. Mastering the Art of Soviet Cooking - Anya Von Bremzen
3-4. Among the Living and the Dead: A Tale of Exile and Homecoming on the War Roads of Europe - Inara Verzemnieks
5. Black Earth: The Holocaust as History and Warning - Timothy Snyder
6. Swing Time - Zadie Smith
7. The Auschwitz Volunteer: Beyond Bravery - Capt. Witold Pilecki [Auschwitz Prisoner #4859], translated to English by Jarek Garlinski.
8. Black-Eyed Susans - Julia Heaberlin
9. Playing Dead - Julia Heaberlin
10. On Tyranny: 20 Lessons from the 20th Century - Timothy Snyder
11. Lilac Girls - Martha Hall Kelly
12. Fight Club - Chuck Palahniuk
13. Snuff - Chuck Palahniuk

14. Commonwealth - Ann Patchett

Another book club choice. It came highly rated by The Week magazine as one of the best novels of the year, but I found it DULL DULL DULL. I didn't give a shit about ANYONE in this book. None of the characters had any substance or merit and the 'plot' (if that's what you'd even call the plodding dullness) was such a fucking snoozefest that I couldn't be bothered to finish the last few chapters.
Give me another Chuck Palahniuk book, please!
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luisterpaul

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Re: 50 books for 2017
« Reply #70 on: July 18, 2017, 07:38:27 AM »

1. Central Station - Lavie Tidhar
2. The Medusa Chronicles - Stephen Baxter & Alastair Reynolds
3. Stories Of Your Life and Others - Ted Chiang
4. Darwinia - Robert Charles Wilson
5. On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft - Stephen King
6. The Elements of Style - Strunk & White
7. Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life - Anne Lamott
8. Speaker's Meaning - Owen Barfield
9. 1Q84 - Haruki Murakami
10. Revenger - Alastair Reynolds
11. Mars Prime - William C. Dietz
12. Steering the Craft: Exercises and Discussions on Story Writing for the Lone Navigator or the Mutinous Crew - Ursula K. Le Guin
13. Astrophysics: A Very Short Introduction - James Binney
14. Coyote - Allen Steele
15. The Telling - Ursula K. Le Guin
16. Gifts - Ursula K. Le Guin
17. Voices - Ursula K. Le Guin
18. Powers - Ursula K. Le Guin
19. Orlando - Virginia Woolf
20. The Other Wind - Ursula K. Le Guin
21. The Girl in the Road - Monica Byrne
22. Pygmy - Chuck Palahniuk
23. Deep Navigation - Alastair Reynolds
24. Typo Squad - Stephen Lomer
25. Tales From Earthsea - Ursula K. Le Guin
26. Throw Like A Woman - Susan Petrone
27. The Chronoliths - Robert Charles Wilson
28. Beautiful You - Chuck Palahniuk
29. The Elements of Grammar - Margaret Shertzer

Excellent companion to The Elements of Style.
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trixi

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Re: 50 books for 2017
« Reply #71 on: July 22, 2017, 07:29:18 PM »

1.  The Nazi Officer's Wife: How One Jewish Woman Survived the Holocaust--Edith Hahn Beer
2.  Tragedy Girl--Christine Hurley Deriso
3.  Dear Amy--Helen Callaghan
4.  Highly Illogical Behavior--John Corey Whaley
5.  The Serpent King--Jeff Zentner
6.  The Bitter Side of Sweet--Tara Sullivan
7.  True Letters from a Fictional Life--Kenneth Logan
8.  The Wrecked Life: the war story of a physician--Jakub Herzig
9.  Nor the Moon by Night--Joy Packer
10.  Dash and Lily's Book of Dares--Rachel Cohn
11.  To the Stars--Molly McAdams
12.  A Guest at the Shooters' Banquet: My Grandfather's SS Past, My Jewish Family, A Search for the Truth--Rita Gabis
13.  March: Book 3--John Lewis
14.  A Season for Fireflies--Rebecca Maizel
15.  Humans, Bow Down--James Patterson
16.  Measure of a Man: From Auschwitz Survivor to Presidents' Tailor--Martin Greenfield
17. Never Never--James Patterson
18.  The Female of the Species--Mindy McGinnis
19.  The Smell of Other People's Houses--Bonnie-Sue Hitchcock
20.  We Are Still Tornadoes--Michael Kun 
21.  The Sun is Also a Star--Nicola Yoon
22.  Rani Patel in Full Effect--Sonia Patel
23.  Year of fear; a Jewish prisoner waits for Auschwitz--Philip Mechanicus
24.  When We Collided--Emery Lord
25.  Black Book--James Patterson
26.  Tell Me Something Real--Calla Devlin
27.  Lucky Few--Kathryn Ormsbee
28.  All By Myself, Alone--Mary Higgins Clark
29.  16th Seduction--James Patterson
30.  The Passion of Dolssa--Julie Berry
31.  Hitler's Forgotten Children: My Life Inside The Lebensborn--Ingrid Von Oelhafen  (a fascinating book of a woman who discovers later in life that she was taken from her family in Slovenia and given to a German family to be raised German in Hitler's Lebensborn program)
32.  Girl Mans Up--M-E Girard
33.  Camino Island--John Grisham
34.  Sing--Vivi Greene
35.  Survivors Club: The True Story of a Very Young Prisoner of Auschwitz--Michael Bornstein
36.  Murder Games--James Patterson
37.  Once and For All--Sarah Dessen
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daytime drinking

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Re: 50 books for 2017
« Reply #72 on: July 30, 2017, 10:16:28 AM »


1- the devil in the white city- erik lawson. 
2- the wisdom of insecurity- alan watts[
3- the gulag archipelago- aleksandr solzhenitsyn
4- the mill creek: an unnatural history of an urban stream- stanley hedeen
5- honey for the bears- anthony burgess
6- the hero with a thousand faces- joseph campbell

7- iceland; land of the sagas- david roberts and jon krakauer- the two experienced alpinists tackle the inhospitable wild of the fabled land of yore.  ole' krakie takes some purty pictures.  makes me want to dive into the saga world myself before immersing myself completely
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MissKitty

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Re: 50 books for 2017
« Reply #73 on: August 01, 2017, 05:12:12 PM »

1. The People's House - David Pepper
2. Mastering the Art of Soviet Cooking - Anya Von Bremzen
3-4. Among the Living and the Dead: A Tale of Exile and Homecoming on the War Roads of Europe - Inara Verzemnieks
5. Black Earth: The Holocaust as History and Warning - Timothy Snyder
6. Swing Time - Zadie Smith
7. The Auschwitz Volunteer: Beyond Bravery - Capt. Witold Pilecki [Auschwitz Prisoner #4859], translated to English by Jarek Garlinski.
8. Black-Eyed Susans - Julia Heaberlin
9. Playing Dead - Julia Heaberlin
10. On Tyranny: 20 Lessons from the 20th Century - Timothy Snyder
11. Lilac Girls - Martha Hall Kelly
12. Fight Club - Chuck Palahniuk
13. Snuff - Chuck Palahniuk
14. Commonwealth - Ann Patchett

15. The Art Forger - B.A. Shapiro

This was a fun ride. A Boston painter/artist shunned by the art world for a perceived faux pas involving her art professor lover gets a chance at revenge, finds new love and hopes to restore her image and reputation. Interesting and well-researched subject matter and well-developed characters make this novel a joy to read. I personally was slightly disappointed in the quickly wrapped up ending, but overall it's quite a satisfying book.
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daytime drinking

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Re: 50 books for 2017
« Reply #74 on: August 03, 2017, 10:48:58 AM »



1- the devil in the white city- erik lawson. 
2- the wisdom of insecurity- alan watts
3- the gulag archipelago- aleksandr solzhenitsyn
4- the mill creek: an unnatural history of an urban stream- stanley hedeen
5- honey for the bears- anthony burgess
6- the hero with a thousand faces- joseph campbell
7- iceland; land of the sagas- david roberts and jon krakauer

8- magister ludi: the glass bead game- hermann hesse- this was built up for me.  it was my buddies' favorite hesse (the one who introduced me to hermann), it one a nobel, thomas mann adored it,  it's considered his most stunning achievement etc....  i'll probably come around and i'm already starting to.  i was expected to as floored as i was while reading steppenwolf or narcissus and goldmund.  this book is gonna linger particularly the character fritz (whom was modeled after nietzsche).  i felt satisfied after finishing the book because midway i let go of the expectations i previously had.  the posthumous writings of the main character could have been in the arabian nights.  a nice little treat at the end, dessert   
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